Daidzein and genistein glucuronides in vitro are weakly estrogenic and activate human natural killer cells at nutritionally relevant concentrations.
Daidzein and genistein glucuronides (DG and GG), major isoflavone metabolites, may be partly responsible for biological effects of isoflavones, such as estrogen receptor binding and natural killer cell (NK) activation or inhibition. DG and GG were synthesized using 3-methylcholanthrene-induced rat liver microsomes. The Km and Vmax for daidzein and genistein were 9.0 and 7.7 micromol/L, and 0.7 and 1.6 micromol/(mg protein. min), respectively. The absence of ultraviolet absorbance maxima shifts in the presence of sodium acetate confirmed that the synthesized products were 7-O-glucuronides. DG and GG were further purified by a Sephadex LH-20 column. DG and GG competed with the binding of 17beta-(3H) estradiol to estrogen receptors of B6D2F1 mouse uterine cytosol. The concentrations required for 50% displacement of 17beta-(3H) estradiol (CB50) were: 17beta-estradiol, 1.34 nmol/L; diethylstilbestrol, 1.46 nmol/L; daidzein, 1.6 micromol/L; DG, 14.7 micromol/L; genistein, 0.154 micromol/L; GG, 7.27 micromol/L. In human peripheral blood NK cells, genistein at <0.5 micromol/L and DG and GG at 0.1-10 micromol/L enhanced NK cell-mediated K562 cancer cell killing significantly (P < 0.05). At > 0.5 micromol/L, genistein inhibited NK cytotoxicity significantly (P < 0.05). The glucuronides only inhibited NK cytotoxicity at 50 micromol/L. Isoflavones, and especially the isoflavone glucuronides, enhanced activation of NK cells by interleukin-2 (IL-2), additively. At physiological concentrations, DG and GG were weakly estrogenic, and they activated human NK cells in nutritionally relevant concentrations in vitro, probably at a site different from IL-2 action. (+info)
Folate nutriture alters choline status of women and men fed low choline diets.
Choline and folate share methylation pathways and, in studies of rats, were shown to be metabolically inter-related. To determine whether choline status is related to folate intake in humans, we measured the effect of controlled folate depletion and repletion on the plasma choline and phosphatidylcholine concentrations of 11 healthy men (33-46 y) and 10 healthy women (49-63 y) fed low-choline diets in two separate metabolic unit studies. Total folate intake was varied by supplementing low folate (25 and 56 microg/d for men and women, respectively) and low choline (238 and 147 mg/d for men and women, respectively) diets with pteroylglutamic acid for 2-6 wk following folate-depletion periods of 4-5 wk. The low folate/choline intakes resulted in subclinical folate deficiencies; mean plasma choline decreases of 28 and 25% in the men and women, respectively; and a plasma phosphatidylcholine decrease of 26% in the men (P < 0. 05). No functional choline deficiency occurred, as measured by serum transaminase and lipid concentrations. The decreases in choline status measures returned to baseline or higher upon moderate folate repletion and were more responsive to folate repletion than plasma folate and homocysteine. Feeding methionine supplements to the men did not prevent plasma choline depletion, indicating that folate is a more limiting nutrient for these methylation pathways. The results indicate that 1) choline is utilized as a methyl donor when folate intake is low, 2) the de novo synthesis of phosphatidylcholine is insufficient to maintain choline status when intakes of folate and choline are low, and 3) dietary choline is required by adults in an amount > 250 mg/d to maintain plasma choline and phosphatidylcholine when folate intake is low. (+info)
Dietary isoflavones: biological effects and relevance to human health.
Substantial evidence indicates that diets high in plant-based foods may explain the epidemiologic variance of many hormone-dependent diseases that are a major cause of mortality and morbidity in Western populations. There is now an increased awareness that plants contain many phytoprotectants. Lignans and isoflavones represent two of the main classes of phytoestrogens of current interest in clinical nutrition. Although ubiquitous in their occurrence in the plant kingdom, these bioactive nonnutrients are found in particularly high concentrations in flaxseeds and soybeans and have been found to have a wide range of hormonal and nonhormonal activities that serve to provide plausible mechanisms for the potential health benefits of diets rich in phytoestrogens. Data from animal and in vitro studies provide convincing evidence for the potential of phytoestrogens in influencing hormone-dependent states; although the clinical application of diets rich in these estrogen mimics is in its infancy, data from preliminary studies suggest beneficial effects of importance to health. This review focuses on the more recent studies pertinent to this field and includes, where appropriate, the landmark and historical literature that has led to the exponential increase in interest in phytoestrogens from a clinical nutrition perspective. (+info)
European interlaboratory comparison of breath 13CO2 analysis.
The BIOMED I programme Stable Isotopes in Gastroenterology and Nutrition (SIGN) has focused upon evaluation and standardisation of stable isotope breath tests using 13C labelled substrates. The programme dealt with comparison of 13C substrates, test meals, test conditions, analysis techniques, and calculation procedures. Analytical techniques applied for 13CO2 analysis were evaluated by taking an inventory of instrumentation, calibration protocols, and analysis procedures. Two ring tests were initiated measuring 13C abundances of carbonate materials. Evaluating the data it was found that seven different models of isotope ratio mass spectrometers (IRMS) were used by the participants applying both the dual inlet system and the continuous flow configuration. Eight different brands of certified 13C reference materials were used with a 13C abundance varying from delta 13CPDB -37.2 to +2.0/1000. CO2 was liberated from certified material by three techniques and different working standards were used varying from -47.4 to +0.4/1000 in their delta 13CPDB value. The standard deviations (SDs) found for all measurements by all participants were 0.25/1000 and 0.50/1000 for two carbonates used in the ring tests. The individual variation for the single participants varied from 0.02 /1000 (dual inlet system) to 0.14/1000 (continuous flow system). The measurement of the difference between two carbonates showed a SD of 0.33/1000 calculated for all participants. Internal precision of IRMS as indicated by the specifications of the different instrument suppliers is < 0.3/1000 for continuous flow systems. In this respect it can be concluded that all participants are working well within the instrument specifications even including sample preparation. Increased overall interlaboratory variation is therefore likely to be due to non-instrumental conditions. It is possible that consistent differences in sample handling leading to isotope fractionation are the causes for interlaboratory variation. Breath analysis does not require sample preparation. As such, interlaboratory variation will be less than observed for the carbonate samples and within the range indicated as internal precision for continuous flow instruments. From this it is concluded that pure analytical interlaboratory variation is acceptable despite the many differences in instrumentation and analytical protocols. Coordinated metabolic studies appear possible, in which different European laboratories perform 13CO2 analysis. Evaluation of compatibility of the analytical systems remains advisable, however. (+info)
Vitamin A as "anti-infective" therapy, 1920-1940.
In the last fifteen years, a large series of controlled clinical trials showed that vitamin A supplementation reduces morbidity and mortality of children in developing countries. It is less well known that vitamin A underwent two decades of intense clinical investigation prior to World War II. In the 1920s, a theory emerged that vitamin A could be used in "anti-infective" therapy. This idea, largely championed by Edward Mellanby, led to a series of at least 30 trials to determine whether vitamin A--usually supplied in the form of cod-liver oil--could reduce the morbidity and mortality of respiratory disease, measles, puerperal sepsis, and other infections. The early studies generally lacked such innovations known to the modern controlled clinical trial such as randomization, masking, sample size and power calculations, and placebo controls. Results of the early trials were mixed, but the pharmaceutical industry emphasized the positive results in their advertising to the public. With the advent of the sulfa antibiotics for treatment of infections, scientific interest in vitamin A as "anti-infective" therapy waned. Recent controlled clinical trials of vitamin A from the last 15 y follow a tradition of investigation that began largely in the 1920s. (+info)
Racial bias in federal nutrition policy, Part I: The public health implications of variations in lactase persistence.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans from the basis for all federal nutrition programs and incorporate the Food Guide Pyramid, a tool to educate consumers on putting the Guidelines into practice. The Pyramid recommends two to three daily servings of dairy products. However, research has shown that lactase nonpersistence, the loss of enzymes that digest the milk sugar lactose, occurs in a majority of African-, Asian-, Hispanic-, and Native-American individuals. Whites are less likely to develop lactase nonpersistence and less likely to have symptoms when it does occur. Calcium is available in other foods that do not contain lactose. Osteoporosis is less common among African Americans and Mexican Americans than among whites, and there is little evidence that dairy products have an effect on osteoporosis among racial minorities. Evidence suggests that a modification of federal nutrition policies, making dairy-product use optional in light of other calcium sources, may be a helpful public health measure. (+info)
Food price policy can favorably alter macronutrient intake in China.
The rapid change in diets, physical activity and body composition in low income countries has led to the coexistence of large pockets of undernutrition and overnutrition. Public health strategies for addressing this situation may be necessary, and price policy options are examined for China. Longitudinal dietary data collected in China in 1989-1993 on a sample of 5625 adults aged 20-45 y were examined. Three-day averages of food group consumption and nutrient intake were used in longitudinal statistical models to examine separately the effects of food prices on the decision to consume each food group and then the amount consumed. The effects of changes in six food prices on the consumption of each of six food groups, not just the food group whose price had changed, and on three macronutrients were estimated. The effects show large and significant price effects. If the joint effects of the nutrition transition are to be considered, then there are clear tradeoffs among which foods to tax and which to subsidize. Most important is the effect of prices in reducing fat intake of the rich but not adversely affecting protein intake for the poor. Increases in the prices of pork, eggs and edible oils are predicted to lower fat intake. Only increases in pork prices led to reduced protein intakes. This raises questions about earlier policy changes being implemented in China and provides insight into an important and controversial area for public health policy. (+info)
Association of morbidity with markers of nutrition and inflammation in chronic hemodialysis patients: a prospective study.
BACKGROUND: Numerous studies suggest a strong association between nutrition and clinical outcome in chronic hemodialysis (CHD) patients. Nevertheless, the pathophysiological link between malnutrition and morbidity remains to be clarified. In addition, recent evidence suggests that nutritional indices may reflect an inflammatory response, as well as protein-calorie malnutrition. In this study, we prospectively assessed the relative importance of markers of nutritional status and inflammatory response as determinants of hospitalization in CHD patients. METHODS: The study consisted of serial measurements of concentrations of serum albumin, creatinine, transferrin, prealbumin, C-reactive protein (CRP), and reactance values by bio-electrical impedance analysis (BIA) as an indirect measure of lean body mass every 3 months over a period of 15 months in 73 CHD patients. Outcome was determined by hospitalizations over the subsequent three months following each collection of data. RESULTS: Patients who required hospitalization in the three months following each of the measurement sets had significantly different values for all parameters than patients who were not hospitalized. Thus, serum albumin (3.93 +/- 0.39 vs. 3.74 +/- 0.39 g/dl), serum creatinine (11.0 +/- 3.7 vs. 9.1 +/- 3.5 mg/dl), serum transferrin (181 +/- 35 vs. 170 +/- 34 mg/dl), serum prealbumin (33.6 +/- 9.2 vs. 30.0 +/- 10.1 mg/dl), and reactance (50.4 +/- 15.6 vs. 43.0 +/- 13.0 ohms) were higher for patients not hospitalized, whereas CRP (0.78 +/- 0.89 vs. 2.25 +/- 2.72 mg/dl) was lower in patients who were not hospitalized. All differences were statistically significant (P < 0.05 for all parameters). When multivariate analysis was performed, serum CRP and reactance values were the only statistically significant predictors of hospitalization (P < 0.05 for both). When a serum CRP concentration of 0.12 mg/dl was considered as a reference range (relative risk 1.0), the relative risk for hospitalization was 7% higher (relative risk = 1.07) for a CRP concentration of 0.92 mg/dl and was 30% (relative risk = 1.30) higher for a CRP concentration of 3.4 mg/dl. When a reactance value of 70 ohms was considered as a reference range with a relative risk of 1.0, the relative risk of hospitalization increased to 1.09 for a reactance value of 43 ohms and further increased to 1.14 for a reactance value of 31 ohms. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study strongly indicate that both nutritional status and inflammatory response are independent predictors of hospitalization in CHD patients. CRP and reactance values by BIA are reliable indicators of hospitalization. Visceral proteins such as serum albumin, prealbumin, and transferrin are influenced by inflammation when predicting hospitalization. When short-term clinical outcomes such as hospitalizations are considered, markers of both inflammation and nutrition should be evaluated. (+info)